Writers Add-On: Create a Writers’ Journal

The secret weapon of writers from James Thurber, Virginia Woolf, Ernest Hemingway, Amy Tan and more writers is keeping a writers’  journal.  They understood that their journals were a place to write for themselves, to observe the world, to keep notes on their own lives, and to exercise their writing muscles.

Sheila_Bender_Writers_Journal_SoftwareSheila Bender, author, poet, writing teacher and coach has created the prompts, quotes, tips for the Writers Add-On based on years of teaching writing classes and mentoring individual students. Sheila’s book A Year in the Life: Journaling for Self Discovery is a classic in the field. Sheila says: “I have been writing and publishing since 1980. I started on an Olivetti electric typewriter and ditto paper. I’ve made up many systems over the years for keeping hard copy and computer files of my starts and revisions as well as records about sending work out. None of them worked as elegantly as JournalLife with the Writer’s Add-On.

How many documents and pieces of writing I would have available today if this software for writers had existed! With JournalLife, nothing gets lost. You don’t have to find your work by searching confusing file names. Everything that relates to a current project is available to look at instantly–notes, journal entries, beginnings and revisions–everything. In addition, my years of writing expertise and instructional experience are compressed into tips and prompts designed to help you keep writing!”

Let JournalLife with the Writer’s Add-On help you increase your skill with the craft, access your writing self with ease, prevent you from losing important writing, and facilitate the self-discovery and insight that writing well provides. Sheila Bender, highly respected author and writing coach, has written the writers’ specialized content for Writer’s Add-On, creating a writers’ journal that you’ll find enormously useful .

Add-Ons merge with JournalLife Online and with JournalLife 3, seamlessly becoming part of the JournalLife program.  An Add-On consists of dozens of Prompts, hundreds of selected Quotes, 50 Tips, extra Topics in the Topics List, and suggested default Daily Pulse Scales and Journal Types.

Here are samples of Prompts and Tips that Sheila Bender has created and Quotes that she has selected for the Writer’s Add-On:

Sample Quotes:

  • “Think like a wise man but communicate in the language of the people.”-William Butler Yeats
  • “Words are sounds of the heart.”-Chinese proverb

Sample Prompts

  • List objects that you have kept with you for years. Outline a memoir for which each chapter is named for one of the objects. When you write the chapters, tell the story of the object and how it came to be in your possession.
  • Write a diary entry by an unreliable narrator (or yourself when blinded by high emotion). Now write a diary entry about the same day from the point of view of a reliable narrator (or yourself when reason returned).

Sample Tips

  • Go easy on adjectives–describe your subjects with nouns and metaphor.
  • If you want to turn a freewrite or journal entry into a poem, try putting the prose into couplets (the two lines do not have to rhyme). Next, make stanzas of about 4-6 couplets. Next, prune words that are now unnecessary